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Clin Excell Nurse Pract. 1998 Jan;2(1):10-22.

A review of vitamins A, C, and E and their relationship to cardiovascular disease.

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University of Florida, College of Nursing, J. Hillis Miller Health Sciences Center, Gainesville, Florida, USA.


Cardiovascular disease (CVD), particularly in the form of coronary artery disease, is the leading cause of death in the United States. Research in the past 10 years links pathogenic low-density lipoprotein (LDL) modification to oxidation damage by free radicals. This review summarizes the major findings of CVD-related epidemiologic research and clinical trials conducted in the past 5 years on vitamins A, C, and E. Vitamin supplementation behaviors are discussed. In prospective studies, the intake of vitamins A, C, and E has been correlated with lower mortality rates. When recent clinical trials and oxidation studies are analyzed, the weight of evidence suggests that 100-400 IU of daily vitamin E over 2 years or more may be most efficacious in reducing low-density lipoprotein oxidation and positively influencing mortality rates from CVD in primary care. Research also supports vitamin E supplementation in patients with known CAD or a history of transient ischemic attacks. Persons with diabetes or hypertension as well as smokers may benefit from supplemental vitamin C intake. Targeted antioxidant vitamin intake should be included in CVD risk assessment and primary preventive counseling efforts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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